One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Each of a number of isomeric liquid alkenes with the formula C₅H₁₀; especially either of the straight-chain isomers CH₂=CH(CH₂)₂CH₃ ("1-pentene") or CH₃CH=CH(CH₂)CH₃ ("2-pentene").
Late 19th century; earliest use found in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. From penta- + -ene.
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